The Lovable Pug
A Real Family Dog

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"Mops" "Carlin"
Weight: 14 — 20 lbs
Height: 9” — 11”
AKC Rank 2008 #15
Lifespan: 12—16 yrs

Origin China

Dog Breed Info - The Pug

Who couldn't love this guy?
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Breed Overview

This breed has a long history. They were first brought to England in Victorian times and became incredibly popular with the wealthy, displacing the King Charles Spaniel as the favored Royal Breed.

This dog of Victorian England usually had cropped ears, further accentuating their wrinkled faces. Several Pugs were brought to England from China in 1886. A year earlier the breed had been recognized by the AKC. Since that time, it has remained popular as a lap dog. Colors: black, tan, brown, fawn.

Their original function in ancient times was that of a lap dog and today it serves as a companion dog.


They are relatively easy to train. They love to please their humans and enjoy obedience training sessions. For best training results, use clicker training with positive reinforcement. It really works wonders and dogs love this method.

Crate Training

Want to crate train your Pug? It's easy and if you're interested, take a look and you'll see what to do. Crate training your puppy will save many headaches and problems.

Potty Training

Most Pugs are easy to house train, potty train, toilet train, housebreak or whatever you want to call it. If you have a puppy, decide if you want to crate or paper potty train it. For the best results, we have a page at Crate vs Paper Potty Training which will help you decide and from there you can get all the information you need to get the job done. Always praise the pup profusely when she goes potty in the RIGHT PLACE so she knows she has done a good thing. Either method will work for this breed.

If you have an older dog, take the dog outside every two hours until she gets the idea which door leads to her potty area. Older dogs catch on to the potty or housebreaking pretty fast once they are shown what to do.



The Pug is a blend of dignity and comedy. They're friendly, playful and confident. They can be stubborn and headstrong, at times. They're pleasant and generally anxious to please, though, and they love to show off. This is an enthusiastic breed but some Pug's also are prone to separation anxiety.

If you happen to get one with a separation anxiety problem, that can be dealt with by investing a few hours of work on your part and some "tough love."

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Friendly Toward Other Dogs

Moderate. There’s one across the street that gets along fine with all dogs in the area, but another one walks by the house that doesn't like my dogs so there you go....

Friendly Toward Other Pets

Moderate. They usually will blend in OK.


Friendly Toward Strangers

Somewhat. These are not people dogs. Family, yes. Strangers, not so much.


Yes, quite playful and fun-loving..


Yes, very affectionate. Good family dog. They love being part of anything going on, They are outgoing and friendly. Real “lap dogs.”

Good with children?

Yes, very tolerant. Actually seems to like kids.

Good with Seniors over 65?

The Pug is an excellent choice for a senior. They have so much love and affection to give, and they want it in return. This is an ideal dog for a senior citizen. Not too heavy, easy to pick up, requires very little exercise, and is content to “hang out” in the house with just short walks for potty calls. Find a Pug rescue group or kennel is longevity of the dog is a problem for the senior.

Living environment

Pugs Can live anywhere. Apartment, farm, big city. All OK.They can NOT tolerate heat and moisture so keep her in an air conditioned environment.

If you have a small, fenced yard, your Pug would appreciate the space to roam and sniff around in. If not, that's ok.

Christmas Pug with two kittens
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Energy level

Moderate to low.

Exercise needs, daily

Running from room to room and a few short walks in the yard for potty call are about all she needs. This is an easy dog to care for.


Yes, will bark at strangers, very good about this.

Guard dog

Noisy, but to small to be effective.


Oh, yes! Sheds heavily!


It is necessary to brush your Pug every day to remove as much loose hair as you can. (they like the attention, too!) Also, you MUST clean out the wrinkles on their forehead and make sure they are dry. Don’t wash or shampoo the dog unless absolutely necessary and be sure she is dry in all her wrinkles.



Suggested Reading For The Pug
Click on the cover photos for more book information and reviews.

  • 3rd book from the left is "101 Dog Tricks" which will give your Pug a number of interesting things to learn to keep her brain stimulated and active. There are things in the book I had never imagined!

  • The book on the right is by the American National Red Cross and deals with dog emergencies, illnesses and injuries. It's a valuable reference manual for all dog owners. Vol 2, 2008, includes a DVD.

Pug Breeders

In the event you decide to go looking for Pug puppies, be SURE to find reputable breeders that really know what they are doing. Be sure the puppy has been well socialized and started in obedience training.
Pug Breeders with puppies for sale.

Pug Rescue

In the event you are seriously considering the adoption of a Pug and are looking for a Pug rescue group or groups in your state, here are several links that might help:
Petfinder - Dog Rescue - (Nationwide) If you do find one to adopt, try to locate the dog health records which could be useful in the future.
Adopt A Pet This is an interesting site that may give you some ideas. There are Pug rescue sites online by various states and don't forget to check your local dog pound or kennels.

Dog Health Issues For The Pug
Below: The dog illness / illnesses or medical problems listed for the Pug by various vets.

This is basically a healthy breed. Don’t let the list below scare you! Your own dog will probably never have ANY of these problems. These are dog health and medical problems this breed is prone to that have been listed by various veterinarians at different times over the past decade or so and some pertain to puppies and very young dogs that a breeder would deal with.

The information contained herein has been gathered from numerous books by veterinarians and is intended as general information only. Every dog and situation is different. You must see your vet. Our information is for general interest only and not intended to replace the advice provided by your own veterinarian.

  • Pug encephalitis—A serious disease of the brain that shows in the form of a sudden seizure or a convulsion. This disease generally shows between ages 9 months and 4 years old. The seizure may end on a minute or two or may continue. The Pug will continue to have violent seizures off and on. Obviously you are going to get to a vet immediately.

  • Distichiasis—An eye condition involving the cornea. Eyelashes, growing improperly on the inner surface of the eyelid cause corneal ulcers due to the constant rubbing and irritation. The problem is fixed by having the vet remove the lashes if the ulcers don’t heal.

  • Heat stroke - Serious issue. The Pug has a short, pushed-in muzzle that makes breathing difficult even in cool weather.

  • Elongated Soft Palate—Brachycephalic dogs like those with short, smashed-in faces have a soft palate that separates the nasal passage from the oral cavity flaps down into the throat which creates snorting sounds. All brachycephalics suffer from this except in Bulldogs, breathing distress is rare. Excess barking ore panting can cause swelling in the throat and lead to more trouble breathing.

  • Stenotic nares—Brachycephalic dogs such as those with smashed in faces tend to have very narrow nostrils. The narrow nasal openings can make it difficult for the dog to breathe. This can only be corrected by surgery and only if the problem is severe.

  • Hemivertebrae—Congenital abnormality of the spine causing an angle in the spine, possibly due to inadequate blood supply in the womb. The tail is most often affected in which case there is no problem. However, it is serious when the spine itself is affected. When the spinal cord becomes twisted or compressed, the dog will show incontinence and weakness in the rear legs. Mild cases may require no action. Moderate cases might require an injection of corticosteroid to reduce inflammation and severe cases could require corrective surgery.

  • Patellar luxation—Limping, Hind Leg Held Up, Can’t straighten back leg. Caused by an unusually shallow spot on the femur, weak ligaments and misalignment of tendons and muscles that align the knee joint and allow the knee cap (patella) to float sideways in and out of position. This can be caused by injury or be present at birth and can affect both rear legs. It’s most common in small and toy dogs. If your dog has trouble straightening the leg, is limping, or is walking on three legs and holding one hind leg up, look for patellar luxation. Several of my dogs have had the problem and all I’ve done is reach down, massage the knee a little until they drop their leg, and we’re good to go for another 3 or 4 months. Severe cases require surgery for a fully lame leg.

  • Brachycephalic syndrome—Difficulty breathing in dogs with a short face and head such as the English Bulldog and Pug. They have a soft, fleshy palate, narrowed nostrils and larynx. Dogs with this will snort, cough, have a low tolerance for exercise, possibly faint easily, especially in hot weather, and breath noisily. This puts a strain on the heart. There can exist a lack of coordination between trying to breathe and swallow. Gastrointestinal problems can follow. Heat stroke is highly possible so keep your dog COOL.

  • Mast Cell Tumors—Mast cells are found throughout the body and help maintain the dog’s normal immune response, health and body functions. The tumors in question are CANCEROUS and spread through the body. There is no known cause for mast cell cancer and no cure, other than surgery for early-detected, low degree tumors that haven't spread too far. The best formula is to keep the dog as healthy as possible and be aware of any signs of tumors or poor health. Whether the dog survives or not depends on how advanced and fast moving the malignant tumor is.

  • Hip dysplasia - Hind end limping, back legs act lame. Wear and time causes the femur to fit poorly into the pelvic socket with improper rotation causing great pain and difficulty walking. You may notice the Pug “hopping”” like a rabbit when running plus hesitating to climb stairs, all due to pain in the hind quarters. The problem actually starts as a very young puppy with an abnormal formation of the hip joint and grows progressively. A vet can locate this with a diagnostics test.

  • Legg-Perthes—A disease of the hip joint in young dogs. It is a deforming of the head of the femur head where it fits into the pelvic socket and is generally noticed at around 6 to 8 months age. The disease affects small and toy breeds and can range from mildly debilitating to totally debilitating. It’s very painful and the dog will have a lame leg at the affected hip. Pain can become severe in some dogs and the dog will go from occasional limping to continuous carrying of the leg. Severe muscle atrophy can set in with the appearance of shortening of the affected leg. Restricted joint movement is also a common sign Legg-Perthes. Surgery will usually restore a dog to a fairly normal life but prevention at the breeding stage is the right solution.

  • Entropion—Eye irritation caused by the eyelids and lashes rolling inward. The problem is usually inherited and found in young, adult dogs. It can come from an eyelid spasm. Affected eyes will be held partially shut and tear excessively. Both eyes will usually be affected the same. Treatment for the condition requires eye surgery.

  • Skin fold dermatitis—Area affect normally the folds on the face where moisture and dirt are trapped in the skin folds causing inflammation. The vet will give you a cleansing shampoo to fight the infection and an antibiotic cream of some kind. In severe cases where the problem won’t subside, surgery might be the last resort to remove a few folds. Commonly found in bulldogs, mastiff’s, Pekingese and Pugs.

  • Demodicosis—Demodectic mange—A skin disease known as “Red Mange.” Loss of hair, itching, reddening of skin and areas can become crusty. Sometimes cured with topical creams. May spread. Treatment is in the form of medications.

  • Atopic dermatitis's—Atopy. Hereditary. Shows at 1 to 3 years age. Skin allergy triggered by dust mites, pollen, poor quality foods and other garbage we put into the dog’s environment. Many breeds are prone to this. The dog will lick, rub, chew and scratch the infected areas. Allergens can also come from fleas, bacteria and yeast infections. See your vet. There are many treatments ranging from medicines, antihistamines, diets, bathing, cleansing the house of dust mites and so on.

  • Sick sinus syndrome—A disturbance in the rhythm of the heart. Common visible symptoms are weakness and fainting. Treatment can be by medicine but that is often only temporary. More likely will be a pacemaker if the condition is chronic and severe. Implanted pacemaker prognosis is good. This procedure is not inexpensive. Common to Miniature Schnauzers, Boxers, Pugs, Cocker Spaniels, Dachshunds and Pomeranian's.

  • Hemivertebra—Congenital abnormality of the spine causing an angle in the spine, possibly due to inadequate blood supply in the womb. The tail is most often affected in which case there is no problem. However, it is serious when the spine itself is affected. When the spinal cord becomes twisted or compressed, the dog will show incontinence and weakness in the rear legs. Mild cases may require no action. Moderate cases might require an injection of corticosteroid to reduce inflammation and severe cases could require corrective surgery.

  • Proptosis - The eyeball literally comes out of the eye socket but can be pushed back in. Seen in dogs with prominent eyes.

  • Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca—(Keratitis) A fancy way of saying “dry eye.” Inadequate tear flow causes painful eye infections of a chronic nature. Causes vary from distemper to certain medications to removing the third eyelid tear gland.. Often treated with cyclosporine drops. or an ointment called cyclosporine topical therapy.

  • Seizures - a serious disorder that appears at around 2 to 4 or 5 years of age in dogs..

  • Canine Nerve Degeneration - This debilitating neurological disease causes many different motor/muscular symptoms including failure of the back legs to move properly which is the most obvious visual symptom. This will likely appear in older dogs and you need to see your set.

  • Demodicosis—Demodectic mange—A skin disease known as “Red Mange.” Loss of hair, itching, reddening of skin and areas can become crusty. Sometimes cured with topical creams. May spread. Treatment is in the form of medications.

  • Tendency toward obesity. Don't overfeed.

Other health problems could occur with your Pug. If you notice any problems with your dog, take it to the vet immediately. This website is for general information only and is not intended to, in any way, be a medical guide.


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